Modena was the native town of two of the most representative Renaissance interpreters of terracotta sculpture
Guido Mazzoni, who worked for the d’Este Dynasty in Ferrara, the Angiò Family in Naples and the kings of France between the fifteenth and the sixteenth century, and Antonio
Begarelli, who worked for the Benedettini Family in Parma and San Benedetto Po around the half of the sixteenth century.
Mazzoni is especially famous for his realistic representation of the Lamentation of Christ in San Giovanni and the peculiar Crib that is hosted in the crypt of the Duomo, that is able to perfectly convey the idea of what everyday life used to be at the end of the fifteenth century. Begarelli’s ideal of beauty was a classical one, and drew inspiration from Raphael and Correggio. It is best exemplified by the Deposition in St. Francesco, the Lamentation in St. Agostino and plenty of further artworks included his tomb that are hosted in the Basilica of San Pietro, that is annexed to the Benedictine Abbey where he lived. St. Pietro and its sacristy, the cradle of Renaissance art, cherish some of the most representative paintings and furnishings dating back to the sixteenth century. In 1546, the elegant Mannerist artist Nicolò dell’Abate, who then became the painter of Francis I of France, frescoed the Room of Fire of the Municipal Palace depicting the Stories of the Roman Modena.